Each year, millions of people make New Year's resolutions.

The trick to making resolutions is not to set yourself up for failure, said Steven Tobias, a child psychologist at The Center of Child and Family Development in Morristown.

He said resolutions should be tailored by each person.

What is meaningful to you?

Be a little self-centered in deciding what to do and what the goals should be because unless a person is really committed and unless the goals are for that person specifically, then it's a set up for failure, Tobias said.

Set realistic goals

Start small and don't get too ambitious. Once a person sets a small goal and achieves it, that person is more likely to keep going and work toward the next goal.

If working out is the goal for 2020, Tobias said start with 20 minutes once a week, then build it up a little more each week until one reaches the desired workout time.

Put it in writing

Put goals on the calendar instead of doing them whenever you feel like doing them. If it's on the calendar, it's concrete and now the person has set a visual schedule to follow.

Keep track of progress

Tobias said that when someone monitors behavior, he or she tends to change it to the desired direction.

Make it public

Humans are social animals. Telling other people what your resolutions are might help you feel more committed to the goals.

Tobias also suggested doing the New Year resolution with someone. Find a partner in dieting or working out or whatever the 2020 goal may be. He said that social support is also going to help both parties stay on task.

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